Weight gain at work: Does this job make me look fat?

October 10, 2018

Your bank account may not be the only thing that’s getting bigger with every paycheck. Your waistline may be expanding, too, according to findings of a survey of 1,012 full-time employees nationwide released by CareerBuilder.

In fact, nearly half of U.S. workers (45%) believe they’ve gained weight at their current jobs. Of these workers, 25% say they’ve gained at least 10 pounds at their place of employment, and 10% say that they have put on 20 pounds or more.

As for what’s causing Americans to pack on the pounds, the majority of workers (53%) blame at least part of their on-the-job weight gain to the sedentary aspects of their positions. Nearly the same number (49%) claim that they don’t have the energy to work out, while 34% say they can’t find the time.

But lack of exercise isn’t the only problem. Poor eating habits are also rampant among workers. Two in 5 workers (41%) find themselves eating as a result of stress. It also doesn’t help that nearly one-quarter of workers (23%) eat out at least three times per week instead of bringing a lunch from home, and 21% can’t resist the temptations of the office candy jar.

So how can they stop those snack attacks? CareerBuilder advises:

  • Know your benefits. Many companies are offering wellness benefits to help employees take control of their health, such as corporate gym memberships, on-site wellness workshops, and smoking cessation programs. Ask your HR department what benefits are available to help you reach your health goals.
  • Abide by the 60/3 rule. If you work a desk job, you’re probably sitting for long periods of time, which can drain you both physically and mentally. Set a reminder for yourself to get up every 60 minutes and move around for at least three. Even short, but frequent breaks can help you alleviate any aches and pains from sitting, while re-energizing you for the rest of the day.
  • Pack your lunch. Nearly 25% of workers who have gained weight on the job attribute it to eating out at lunch. Bringing your own lunch will not only cut down on the extra calories that are hidden in your takeout meals; it will also cut down your costs.
  • Snack smartly. The vast majority of workers (72%) snack throughout the work day—which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, provided they are eating the right foods, such as fresh fruits and yogurt
  • Use your lunch break wisely. Go for a walk and do it outside if possible. The exercise, combined with some fresh air and vitamin D, will provide multiple health benefits, from stress relief to increased energy to a better mood.

Research contact:Michael.Erwin@careerbuilder.com

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